Saturday, 21 May 2011

Perfect 10

Tom on Swelltor
North Hessary Tor
Another beautiful evening for a run over the moors.  I met with Will Hancock and Tom Davidson at Princetown and set off down the disused railway, after the trees we turned left for the climb to North Hessary Tor (36).  This would be a stunning Tor if weren't for the television mast which has been in place since the 1950's I guess before the creation of Dartmoor National Park.  The Tor does offer a great view point, with stunning views of the north moor.  We continued north for the small hop to Rundlestone Tor (49), before turning to the west to Hollow Tor (61).  We then turned our attention to Foggin Tor, a small detour saw us take in one of the makers on the Abbot's Way , with it's distinctive A for Ashburton on it's eastern side and T for Tavistock on it's western.  It would appear that Foggintor (110) was quarried long ago and as such doesn't survive as Tor anymore (But I would happily revisit this area if I was to hear differently).  From the eastern edge of the quarry we drop down to cross the old railway before climbing to a small tor on the south-eastern flank of the hill. Is this Swelltor (204) or was that to excavated during the quarrying here.  Whatever the answer the small tor is very nice with an excellent stack.  We turned north to Kings Tor (115), and this tor was most definitely there and offers a lot to explore.  We discussed the plan from here and decided to head over to Ingra Tor, Leeden Tor before heading home.  We descended off the tor, in an effort to find the unused  corbels that were destined for the old London Bridge, we dropped right onto these.  They always appear to me that they have been here just a short time and will picked up any time.  We dropped down to the disused railway for the run around to Ingra Tor.  On the way we took and quick detour to Fur Tor (202) and Yes Tor(203) both omitted from the list and no where to be seen on the OS map, but are clearly marked on the Harvey's 1:40,000 of Dartmoor.  Fur Tor in particular is a nice little tor with a some big slabs of rock. Ingra Tor (151) was soon reached and we turned our attention to Leeden Tor (124), with a easy run run along a friendly sheep track.  We took our final rest on top before the 3km run back to Princetown.  Another excellent run in ideal conditions.   
Will on Rundlestone Tor

Hollow Tor

Above Foggintor Quarry

Nice view point on Swelltor

Fur Tor and Yes Tor as shown on the Harveys Map

Monday, 16 May 2011

100 up!

100 up! Will, Me and Oliver on Leather Tor
Still Celebrating on Cramber Tor

Tom, Oliver, Will and Me on Cramber Tor

Sun Burst Over Leeden Tor
Watching the sun burst on Hart Tor

Oliver on the run down from Cramber Tor

So four of us, Oliver, Will, Tom and Myself gathered below Sharpitor (108), to start the run that would see me reach my 100th Dartmoor Tor/Hilltop.  It would also see my friend Tom climb his first Tor, so it was all set for an eventful evening run.  Starting up hill I was never the best of ideas but that’s how it is sometime.  It wasn’t long before the four of us, via four different routes climbed to the top of Sharpitor to survey the view and pat Tom on the back for losing his Tor virginity.  The scattergun approach to our group continued as we all favoured differing routes off the Tor.  I opted for the double back and go wide approach to cut out the worst of the clitter,   before the pleasant run down to the beginning of the climb to Leather Tor (123), one of my favourites on the moor.  This tor, breaches the side of the hill to create a nice ridge walk, and has great views over Burrator Reservoir and Sheeps Tor beyond, it was always favourite when I was leading groups over the moors.  So this was number 100 and we stop for some photos and to admire the view.  We clambered off the west side and hugged the hillside, slowly gaining height to Peek Hill (116), not stopping we turned and skirted the north edge of Stanlake Plantation which was showing the signs of tree felling as the Larch has been taken out to stop the spread of Sudden Oak Death.  We followed Devonport Leat until after the Aqueduct before breaking away to Cramber Tor (95) the high point of the run.  From there we surveyed an incredible sun burst through the clouds, wish I had my DSLR instead of an ancient point and shoot.  The run to Hart Tor (119) gives an opportunity to stretch your legs, on a well worn path partly thanks to the recruits from HMS Raleigh that pass this way during there basic training.  From Hart Tor we ran down to the stone rows and the remains of the blowing house near Black Tor Falls, before the small climb up to the summit of Black Tor (143).  The military were setting up on Black Tor as it was the annual Ten Tors event over the weekend and the tor is major checkpoint during the event.  We crossed the road shortly after leaving the tor and skirted below Leeden Tor, cut around the hill and were soon back at the cars.  A really good run, on a beautiful evening with great friends, what more can you ask for.

I’ll be out this Thursday if you fancy a run, meet at Princetown Main Car Park at 1745, maybe see you there. 


Monday, 9 May 2011

Join me for number 100!

Anyone up for a shortish fell run on Thursday after work?  We would take in at least two tors to bring up the 100 Tor/hilltops since starting last July.  The plan would be to meet either in Plymouth at 1715 or on the Plymouth to Princetown road in Sharpitor Car Park 1745/1800  We would take in Shapitor before heading to Leather Tor to celebrate number 100.  Anyone wanting to can walk directly to Leather Tor and meet us there.   For those of you who have had enough you can head off or tag along to visit Peek Hill, Cramber Tor, Hart Tor, Black Tor and Leeden Tor a total distance of 9km, at a nice pace with the option of bugging out at anytime.  

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

and so to the North Moor

Out for a run on the north moor from near Shilstone Tor. Firstly over to Buttern Hill(201), again not on the original list, but a nice spot non the less and duely added to my list. Then over to Rippator or Rival Tor(140), got a little carried away and ran right over the top, not even stopping until I got to Watern Tor(30). I arrived a little confused, but on a checking the map I regained my bearings and spent sometime exploring the Tor. A little gem and one that I haven't been to for probably 20 years, but one that will be returning to in the near future with camera in hand. Then over to Wild Tor which I have already ticked off but going that way set up the fast run down to Hound Tor(47), then over to the less than impressive Little Hound Tor(48) via a nice little stone circle. Next it was up to Cosdon Beacon(11) which at 550m gives great views all around. The last leg was back to Shilstone Tor(162), in 25 years of walking on the moors the leg from the east to Shilstone Tor has been made numerous times, but one that I have never really got to grips with. Today was no different and drifted to far south before adjusting into Tor. I haven't been to Shilstone Tor since I re-ran my 35mile Ten Tors Route in 2005, with my friend Oliver Marner. Then I was an hour and a half into a 12.5hr epic! Yesterday my run was over and I was happy after a great run.

Shilstone Tor

Cosdon Beacon looking towards Yes Tor

Watern Tor

Watern Tor with Wild Tor in the back ground

Hound Tor